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Haywood and Arenas Sightings

Brendan Haywood and Gilbert Arenas both participated in non-contact drills on Monday, which Wizards Coach Ed Tapscott said livened up the team's first practice since its 31-point loss to former Wizard Roger Mason Jr. and the San Antonio Spurs on Saturday. Tapscott said Haywood and Arenas were limited to running, shooting and passing drills, but just their presence added a boost.

"With them walking on the floor, it was like 'Hey, we can do a few things out here,' " Tapscott said. "You're always worried after you've had a day off that you'd have a sluggish practice, but we didn't. We had a good sharp practice. We had two guys that were able to participate a little bit. Did some shooting and some running up and down the floor. I think that was one of the reasons we had a good practice, it picked practice up, them being able to participate in some of the preliminary stuff."

There still is no solid time table as to when either player will actually be cleared to full-contact practices and eventually, if possible, games. Both have been out the entire season. Haywood stuck around for about 45 minutes after practice to shoot free throws and work out with unofficial assistant Tony Massenburg in the low post. He looked pretty fluid, spinning around Massenburg and at times dunking despite his surgically-repaired right wrist.

"This was the first day I really got a lot in. Got my lifting in before, and my shooting in before practice, some non-contact drills, some cardio, then played with Massenburg afterwards, so I'll probably be a little tired tomorrow," Haywood said.

Arenas emerged from the locker room after practice with an ice pack wrapped around his surgically-repaired left knee, a signal that he did a little more than riding a bicycle. Arenas waved to reporters, said, "Hey," and kept it moving.

Antawn Jamison also spoke at length after practice about trade rumors of him going to Cleveland last week. Jamison said that while he never got the impression that the talks between Washington and Cleveland were serious, his teammates -- especially Arenas and DeShawn Stevenson -- still gave him a hard time about possibly suiting up for a hated rival.

"We had fun with it," Jamison said with a laugh. "Gilbert and D-Steve said 'If you do that, we're going to have to hurt your [butt].' D-Steve said, 'Nah, We can't have that.' Gil said he was going to take my legs out the first time he saw me."

By Michael Lee  |  February 23, 2009; 2:58 PM ET
 | Tags: Arenas, Haywood, Mason, Tapscott  
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Next: Young Struggling

Comments

Gil is still icing that knee?

Posted by: MDBaller1 | February 23, 2009 3:19 PM | Report abuse

Man, what a waste of a season...Skins dont play until August. The CAPS are the onyl thing worth getting up for anymore. Baseball is dominated by the AL East/NL East...there go both of my teams hopes of doing well (Nats/O's)..............bummed out and bored

Posted by: BurgwithaU | February 23, 2009 3:29 PM | Report abuse

Arenas is going to icing that knee for the rest of his career.

Posted by: kalo_rama | February 23, 2009 3:38 PM | Report abuse

Both came back the same day. Sounds like the brass have timetables that they are sticking to, but aren't sharing with anyone. What do you think they are looking to do folks? I say one month from today, March 23rd when the team comes back from a 4 game west-coast road trip. That leaves 15 games in the season--enough to play together but not enough to mess up the lottery race.

Posted by: lameotron | February 23, 2009 3:38 PM | Report abuse

You're probably right Kal, motherfu....!

Posted by: BurgwithaU | February 23, 2009 3:53 PM | Report abuse

Even if Arenas and Haywood were ready to go 100% today, the role players and young guys are not ready for prime time.

As Lebron would sing - one and out, time after time.

What a wonderful opportunity to play Songailia, James and McGuire - and let those with some potential wait for next year or the years thereafter to log some quality minutes.

Posted by: Izman | February 23, 2009 3:56 PM | Report abuse

I doubt there's any real timetable. They're likely playing it by ear.

Posted by: kalo_rama | February 23, 2009 3:59 PM | Report abuse

i say Friday the 13th vs. Orlando

Posted by: prescrunk | February 23, 2009 4:00 PM | Report abuse

Gil said he was going to take my legs out the first time he saw me."
-------------

Hmmm, must of been the same mindset that Gerald Wallace had...

Posted by: -CN- | February 23, 2009 4:14 PM | Report abuse

Yea, I don't see them having any timetable either. It's got to be based on how they react. I'd give them about a month from the time they do actual contact practices. No need to rush things.

Posted by: psps23 | February 23, 2009 4:16 PM | Report abuse

You can almost guarantee the Wiz are going to trade bad contracts and lottery pick this offseason for a decent vet. I'd say it would be the best move, if we weren't picking #1 overall. But it sure would suck if we were.

Posted by: t-train | February 23, 2009 4:32 PM | Report abuse

don't come back till next year...and hope the curse hibernates for a year or so. Wait thats bears. nuts!

Posted by: BurgwithaU | February 23, 2009 4:38 PM | Report abuse

I can see a bad contract coupled with one or two of our prized youngsters traded. Seriously, if the Wizards were desperate enough, I could see them essentially giving away Nick Young to a team so long as they take Etan Thomas with them, possibly for a future 2nd round pick. That would clear cap room and allow the Wizards to sign a draft pick that would most certainly be more talented than either of those two.

I also don't think another team would be too wary of the contracts, especially a team that's well under the cap, because Young is cheap and Thomas' contract comes off the books within a year. It would essentially be a free young talent with little impact to a team hoping for a 2010 offseason score.

Posted by: psps23 | February 23, 2009 4:42 PM | Report abuse

If I'm understanding your intention psps23, the only way that deal would work is if they traded Young and Thomas to a team that's far enough under a the cap to absorb their salaries without having to give the Wiz any salary back. First, not too many teams fit that description (the Pistons will have the room, but I can't see them having much interest in Young). Second, I can't see any team coveting Young so much that they'd take on $7+ mill in extra salary, even if it's only for one season. Not in this economic climate.

According to one of the post trade roundups (on either espn.com or SI.com) it was noted that one of the reason why the Jamison to Cleveland deal fell through was because the Cavs balked at having to take on Thomas' contract. if a team wasn't willing to carry that weight to get a player who could potentially help them win a title (although I remain skeptical on that score) it's hard to imagine anyone doing it to get Nick Young.

Posted by: kalo_rama | February 23, 2009 4:58 PM | Report abuse


Gil and Brendan should wait to play until April to play. That way the Wizards will still be in the running for Blake Griffin..lol

But seriously it would be nice to see this team in full health to see what they can do together

Posted by: rcnasa | February 23, 2009 4:59 PM | Report abuse

If Hasheem Thabeet is available, then we must use the pick and pick Hasheem. Otherwise, I say trade it.

What’s all this talk about Haywood back in practice? Who the Fudge cares. I am sure he will return next year and average 8 points and 6 rebounds in 30 mpg. Man, what would we do without him? It sickens me that so many people here attribute this seasons woes to the loss of BTH and Mason. For all those riding Mason’s coat-tail, please believe the only reason he is thriving is because of the system. If you put Deshawn on a team with Tim Duncan in the paint, Tony Parker as the point, and Pop as the coach, I guarantee you he averages more than Roger and he would have his fair share of game winners. So please, let’s all hop off Roger’s jock. Hell, even “George Hill” from IUPUI looks good in that system. Arghhh, wake up people! What is so hard to comprehend about that. Roger is not great, and not worth what he wanted. Ernie made the right move.

Believe me, Ernie is taking all the necessary steps to building this team into a contender. He is one of the most respected GM’s in the league, and is no “rookie”. He canned that joke of a coach Eddie Jordan, who was running a day care clinic. And he is not overpaying players who think they deserve it (Roger). AJ and Gil were honest Abe’s decision, Ernie couldn’t do anything about that. With a healthy core next season, this team will be able to score with anyone. All they are missing is Thabeet, and Ernie knows that. You add a 7’3 beast in the middle who, it adds immediate impact on the defensve end.

Posted by: cj658 | February 23, 2009 5:04 PM | Report abuse

Hasheem Thabeet

Posted by: cj658 | February 23, 2009 5:07 PM | Report abuse

“Second, I can't see any team coveting Young so much that they'd take on $7+ mill in extra salary, even if it's only for one season. Not in this economic climate.’

Please do us all a favor and stop attributing teams unwillingness to take on contracts due to economy. The thought and concept is pure stupidity, at its highest level. Please provide me with any facts or figures that directly correlate the current economic state to the decisions being made in the sports world. The sports world has not been effected in any way shape or form. Did you see the Super Bowl rating s this year? Did you hear about how much money companies were spending to advertise during the Super Bowl? Did you hear about the Yankees busy offseason? Have you checked out the Caps recent attendance and revenue figures? Did you even catch the All-Star game ratings? Have you been following the NFL offseason?

You talk a good game , but you’re really just as clueless as any average Joe. Pitiful. Again, pure idiotic foolishness.

Posted by: cj658 | February 23, 2009 5:18 PM | Report abuse

Teams wouldn’t take on NY and the 7 mill that comes along with him (ET), no matter the economic climate. No team would do that at any time, any year. If the economy were “surging” right now, no NBA GM in his right mind would make that move. Why? Because it’s stupid.

NBA GM’s don’t say, “well it’s a rough economy, so we’ll put off on making any stupid trades until the economy picks up”

How does that sound?!? Give me a break, GM’s don’t check the Dow and Nasdaq before they make moves. Give me break. They make the moves that make sense for their respective teams. Period.

Posted by: cj658 | February 23, 2009 5:24 PM | Report abuse

CJ, your talk on the economy is tongue in cheek right?

As for Roger's success, nobody would deny that playing for the Spurs, a championship caliber organization, as opposed to the dreadful Wizards would boost a role player's career. In a well-oiled machine, your role is defined and the coach is able to put you in position to best utilize your strengths, etc., etc. Still, you have to be a capable player to thrive to the extent that he has. And contrary to your analysis comparing him and Deshawn, at least Mike Wilbon seems to disagree (see his chat today):

San Marcos, Tex.: If you see anybody in Wizards management, please thank them for letting Roger Mason Jr. walk to the Spurs. I had no idea who the guy was, much less how good he is, prior to this season.

Michael Wilbon: Hi everybody...Sorry I'm late...just had fascinating meetings at The Post this morning that might wind up with more of me and new forms of me, so there's a hint...but we'll deal with that in a few weeks in greater detail...I will start with this acknowledgement that Roger Mason Jr., formerly of the Wizards and currently of the Spurs, is one of my favorite people in sports, probably because I've known of him and known him since he was a teenager...And it's so cool to see hard work and intelligence rewarded, and he's got both in abundance...The Wizards should have kept him and let Stevenson go. Intelligence is a trait that is very underrated and underappreciated and Mason was underestimated and undervalued here in what he could do, how much he could do, and how big an asset he could be to a professional basketball team...

Posted by: patience-is-key | February 23, 2009 5:42 PM | Report abuse


cj658,

Both Blake and Thabeet would be nice picks because there an inside guys. It's hard to honestly say right now which one is better. Thabeet isn't really the "no-brainer" no#1 pick there is question about how he can handle men his size on the next level and also his foot work and offense will need time to improve. There is also question about Griffin, if he's playing with a "softer" schedule. One thing is true, if Ernie picks one of them he'll have to look at moving one of his big men because of the huge log jam, but thats something a GM would rather have than not having enough healthly players.

Haywood is not the best center in the league and true he doesn't show up on some night, but he does provide better rebounding and defense. Plus I rather have him at center than Songalia, Blatche or McGee right now.

Also why hate on Mason? He's hit 3 game winning shots for the Spurs(Deshawn, couldn't hit a open shot in the Cavs playoff series). Secondly, why are you criticizing a man who picked a team that has a chance to compete in the playoffs (Mason couldn't chose the Lakers because he would play behind Kobe)

Also you mention Ernie, granted he's a good GM but let's not forget he also wanted to keep Blatche, matched the Bucks salary to keep Etan. Now he's made good trades with Jamison and Caron but you can't ignore some of his poor off-season signings.

cj658, I know the economy is hurting everyone but man you are on the edge about someone making a comment on the team. I guess it's a way to gain attention. Your now going to criticize my intelligence about the game...lol I will say this, you don't really know enough about basketball to question anyone's intelligence because if you did, you'd be a GM in the league

Posted by: rcnasa | February 23, 2009 5:56 PM | Report abuse

Yeah, with Gil and Hey coming back that'll be even LESS time for the young ones. Eh.

Posted by: charley42 | February 23, 2009 5:58 PM | Report abuse

cj658,

Oh yea, with Eddie Jordan you can call it a day care but the last time I checked...before Eddie's arrival the team had been to the playoffs once in the past 14 plus years. We'll see next season if Eddie really may an impact on this team when they are health. I'd say so, you'd be very stupid, cj658, to think Ernie created this alone.

And finally the day care comment is crap. Eddie wasn't alone in picking Blatche, Stevenson, and Arenas. If the GM was actually being one, he would have discpined players who didn't listen to their coaches...the blame can be shared for that one.

Posted by: rcnasa | February 23, 2009 6:09 PM | Report abuse

"According to one of the post trade roundups (on either espn.com or SI.com) it was noted that one of the reason why the Jamison to Cleveland deal fell through was because the Cavs balked at having to take on Thomas' contract. if a team wasn't willing to carry that weight to get a player who could potentially help them win a title (although I remain skeptical on that score) it's hard to imagine anyone doing it to get Nick Young.

Posted by: kalo_rama"

Well the Cavs are one of the few teams, if not the only team, that are in the unique position of seriously contending for an immediate title on top of seriously contending for the 2010 free agent sweepstakes. Most teams are looking at one or the other. It's understandable if the Cavs didn't want Thomas if they felt next season was their best shot at winning a title (and in the process, winning Lebron's loyalty) if they feel there will be better options than Jamison this summer.

It could also be that the Cavs weren't the ones that backed down from that deal, but that EG was the main culprit that wouldn't let Jamison get away. Can't say for sure.

And it may not be Young. It may be Blatche that gets offered up. Maybe a future draft pick on top. I'm not too sure about other team's projected cap space this summer, but I think there could be some teams that would be interested in cheap young talent without really affecting their ability to be players in 2010.

Just an idea. Especially if we end up with a shot at Blake Griffin, I see EG exploring everything possible rather than let potential like that be traded away for less than his value.

Posted by: psps23 | February 23, 2009 6:20 PM | Report abuse

rcnasa, your points about the draft are well taken. This is generally considered a fairly weak draft with no players with automatic franchise changing potential. The reason why Griffin seems to be viewed as the most likely #1 is because he has the most polished skill set at a position where highly skilled players are at a premium. This is esp. true for the Wiz, who haven't had a serious interior scoring presence along the frontline since Howard and Webber.

Posted by: kalo_rama | February 23, 2009 6:24 PM | Report abuse

"And it may not be Young. It may be Blatche that gets offered up. Maybe a future draft pick on top. I'm not too sure about other team's projected cap space this summer, but I think there could be some teams that would be interested in cheap young talent without really affecting their ability to be players in 2010."

I agree with that, in principle. The problem is that once you add on Thomas' contract, even for only one season, it ceases to be cheap. $7+ mill is a lot of money even in boom times, and these ain't boom times. Unless they really valued Thomas highly as a player (highly unlikely) any team that made such a deal would, essentially, be paying upwards of $9 mill next season for the privilege of having Young (or Blatche or McGee or whomever) on their roster. Can't see that happening.

Posted by: kalo_rama | February 23, 2009 6:30 PM | Report abuse

Believe me, Ernie is taking all the necessary steps to building this team into a contender. He is one of the most respected GM’s in the league, and is no “rookie”. He canned that joke of a coach Eddie Jordan, who was running a day care clinic. And he is not overpaying players who think they deserve it (Roger). AJ and Gil were honest Abe’s decision, Ernie couldn’t do anything about that. With a healthy core next season, this team will be able to score with anyone. All they are missing is Thabeet, and Ernie knows that. You add a 7’3 beast in the middle who, it adds immediate impact on the defensve end.


Posted by: cj658 | February 23, 2009 5:04 PM

What are you smoking? Ernie and his amateur butt boy Tapscott would both be looking for a job if this franchise had an engaged ownership. Roger mason, Gilbert Arenas, Ed Tapscott, Antwain Jamison, D-Steve are more than ample reasons to fire Grunfeld. When you fire EJ under the premise that there is enough talent to win, then you better win. Tapscott should have never gotten the job. Him and staff need to be gone post haste.

THABEET IS A GANGLY, AVERAGE BALLPLAYER (FAR FROM A BEAST). See Pitt vs. Conn last week.

This team is playing far worse than at any point under EJ and is the most boring squad in the league. I mean you really got to be a fanatical fan, have free tickets,or have nothing to do, to go to one of these games.

What irks me the most is the regression that both of our 1st round draft picks have displayed under the tutelage of Tapscott. They both were improving and playing real ball before the amateur hour started (check the stats). Tapscott has done an effective jobs of getting in both of these kids head and then has the unprofessionalism to call them out in the press.

Frankly, Tapscott, Grunfeld, jAMISON AND bUTLER ALL NEED TO "MAN UP" AND TAKE RESPONSIBILITY FOR THIS SEASON. You guys are delusional with all of the incessant talk about them being ALL sTARS, THEY AIN'T. Both Jamison and Butler are "get mine" players who don't make their teamates better. Real AllStars ala Dwayne Wade can single-handedly lead a squad to a 500 mark.

Smart money would have moved one of those cats and brought in some defensive minded players. The problem now is that even if the Wizards bring their core group back, it will be damn near impossible to change the veteran player, no defense required, meritocracy that has infected this squad(irregardless of who is the coach).

Teams win with the desire to play defense and competent adult leadership. I have never heard of a youth vs veteran feud as the one that exists on this squad feuled by the present leadership.

You had a 12-42 team and the organization chose wanted to stand pat from a trade prespective, so you can keep intact an injury prone, non defensive minded , aging squad, that has been to one second round playoff series in 4 years.

RIDICULOUS.

Posted by: NewManagement | February 23, 2009 6:31 PM | Report abuse

As for the Cavs, the deal didn't die because they were worried about Jamison's deal screwing up their 2010 cap situation. If they don't win the title this season or next, all of that cap space they'll have may be for naught, if James bolts to NY or somewhere else. They WANTED Jamison, even with his long-term deal. The reason it died was because they didn't want to take on the one year of Thomas's deal, which underscores how skittish teams are about taking on extra salary, even short term.

Posted by: kalo_rama | February 23, 2009 6:36 PM | Report abuse

Good to know that GA has something left in that knee to ice.

Not just bone-on-bone.

Posted by: SteveMG | February 23, 2009 6:49 PM | Report abuse

Ernie Grunfeld:

Drafted McGuire and Blatche with 2nd round picks. Better than average adds.

Added McGee with a late 1st rounder -- someone who might fall into the lottery if he was in this year's draft.

Traded Kwame Brown and Laron Profit for Caron Butler. Speaks for itself.

Traded Laettner's huge salary, Stackhouse's contract, and Devon Harris for three playoff seasons and Antwan Jamison.

Added Arenas on very favorable terms.

Didn't sign Larry Hughes for $12 mill a year over 5 years; didn't bite on the $6 mill. plus offered for Jeffries.

Traded JCN for a draft pick which he turned into Javaris Crittenton.

Helped take the Knicks to two finals. Helped take a small market franchise like the Bucks to three playoff appearances, his teams never finished below .500; added an All-Star, Michael Redd with a second round selection.

That's a pretty good resume.

We can argue about Joe Dumars or Greg Poppavich being better choices, but neither is coming to DC.

Amongst active GM's Ernie is easily a top 5.

Yes, he gambled on Arenas, and under-rated Mason this season. Verdict is still out on Arenas too. Ultimately Arenas could end Grunfeld's tenure, but I wouldn't want to see him walk after the season (or get tossed). Given the recent history of this franchise, Grunfeld has done an excellent job. He's made a lot more good moves than bad ones with the cards that have been dealt.

Posted by: JPRS | February 23, 2009 6:53 PM | Report abuse

exactly kal. and only an amateur (i mean we all are, but some are worse than others) would suggest that you could tack Etan with a Nick or Mike James at this point, given the economy and the financial pressures on team owners. You can only get your trash out when it's lumped in with something that somebody really, really, really wants (AJ in the case of Cleveland, and even that failed).

Posted by: patience-is-key | February 23, 2009 6:54 PM | Report abuse

YEAH!!!

Yes, this will likely be the worst season for DC Basketball - have to look towards the future! GREAT to hear Haywood is back on the court... he is there behind the Wizards bench every game. Arenas is around - we'll take it.

Let the Wizards do what they need to do....

Posted by: 2StepsAway | February 23, 2009 7:26 PM | Report abuse

When BTH is ready to go, by all means play him. He can't hurt himself.
Arenas might cost Ernie his job, but not this year. Keep him inactive unless he can go full-bore in practice for a week and doesn't need ice packs. Let's get as many games as possible out of him next year. He'll probably be a shorter version of Stevenson with a better outside shot.

Posted by: lrmc623 | February 23, 2009 7:30 PM | Report abuse

JPRS, there's no question that Grunfeld is a damn good bball GM. He's the primary architect behind the Wizards return from the dark ages of Unseld/Jordan/Collins. But he can't get credit for his successes (which are many) without taking the blame for his failures (of which there've been more than a few). Certainly firing him now or this summer would be a bad move (unless there's a clearly better candidate available, but as you say, most of them already have gigs). But if next season ends with the Wizards either missing the playoffs because they have once again been torpedoes by injuries or staying health and making the playoffs but finishing well short of the conference finals (I'm not even going to consider the possibility of them being healthy and still missing the postseason), then it's most likely time for a change. Because by that point we'll have been through 7 years of the Grunfeld regime without them having advanced much beyond where they were in year 1. To use Ernie's own words, that's unacceptable.

Posted by: kalo_rama | February 23, 2009 7:32 PM | Report abuse

Make that year 2, the first playoff year. Year 1 they ended up in the lottery.

Good to know that GA has something left in that knee to ice.

Not just bone-on-bone.

A grimly optimistic way to look at it.

Posted by: kalo_rama | February 23, 2009 7:35 PM | Report abuse

Roger is not great, and not worth what he wanted.

---------------------

Roger didn't ask the Spurs for his $7.3 mil. It was *offered* to him. No holdouts. No playing the field. Offer made, offer accepted.

Let's say Roger did play hardball, pounding the table until he got the Spurs to give him his 7.3mil. If it is as you say, that most anybody would flourish under the Spurs system, then they could have signed anybody. There are plenty of Deshawn-caliber role players out there who would love to go to the Spurs.

The Spurs offered him what they did because he was worth it. It's not like they needed more superstar talent. They needed a solid role player, and they were willing to pay what they did to get it. I'd say they might be getting more than what they paid for with his performances when Ginobili is out. Mason's worth is based on his performance and his market value (which was set at $7.3mil by the Spurs)...not your halfcocked opinions.

That being said, Grunfeld made a sound decision in letting him go, as much as it pains me to say. Mason was worth more than what we were looking to pay him, and it was unreasonable to think that we would need him with a healthy gilbert and stevenson. Although I would agree that it would have been better to keep mason and drop stevenson...but that's easier to say in hindsight.

So even though there are some people that use the Mason situation to show EG's poor judgement (which is a foolish argument, it seems we agree on that point), that does not mean that Mason is worth any less than what the Spurs paid him.

Posted by: crs-one | February 23, 2009 7:39 PM | Report abuse

A grimly optimistic way to look at it.

Yeah, now that I re-read it, it was pretty grim.

But isn't that what the micro-fracture surgery supposed to do? Regenerate tissue/cartilage between the bones to mitigate bone-on-bone friction?

Ouch. Hurts just typing that.

Posted by: SteveMG | February 23, 2009 8:48 PM | Report abuse

I guess I don't see Abe Pollin extending Grunfeld beyond next season without a fairly dramatic increase in outcomes. Not that I could define that increase... it's up to Abe.

I'm not even sure how much Abe agreed with Ernie's decision to fire Ed Jordan and replace him with Tapscott. That doesn't sound like the Abe Pollin we've come to know and not love.

So Grunfeld may have used up a lot of chips on that transaction.

It all comes down to two things:
1) who coaches the Wiz next season, and
2) how much luck they have in terms of injuries.

Not enough improvement = time's up.

Posted by: Samson151 | February 23, 2009 9:46 PM | Report abuse

"Please do us all a favor and stop attributing teams unwillingness to take on contracts due to economy. The thought and concept is pure stupidity, at its highest level. Please provide me with any facts or figures that directly correlate the current economic state to the decisions being made in the sports world. The sports world has not been effected in any way shape or form. Did you see the Super Bowl rating s this year?"
-cj

What? Are you awake in the real world? NBA teams are making trades based on dumping salary - NFL teams are dumping salaries - The Super Bowl commercials weren't even completely sold out the friday before the game - Sponsorships are drying up everywhere - I believe Citibank is trying to get out of a $400 million stadium naming rights deal it already signed - Small market teams are struggling in many sports.

And it's just the beginning! It's going to get worse.

Posted by: rphilli721 | February 23, 2009 10:08 PM | Report abuse

I like the way that nobody even considers Tyler Hansborough along with Thabeet and Griffin.

Chew on this. Tyler will have a more immediate impact in the NBA. Why? Because he is tougher than both and he plays only one way. Blood and Guts Tough. He won't need to change his playing style to fit the NBA. He is power forward personified.

Don't be surprised when Grunfield picks Tyler. He will not be a project.

Trust me.

LarryInClintonMD.

Posted by: LarryInClintonMD | February 23, 2009 10:26 PM | Report abuse

icing isn't necessarily a sign the knee still hurts. baseball pitchers ice all the time, not just when it hurts. could be just preventative.

or not.

Posted by: stevie2 | February 23, 2009 10:28 PM | Report abuse

"icing isn't necessarily a sign the knee still hurts. baseball pitchers ice all the time, not just when it hurts. could be just preventative.

or not.

Posted by: stevie2 | February 23, 2009 10:28 PM "

Gilby is probably icing his knee to prevent fluid buildup and swelling.

If/when he comes back, he'll probably continue to have issues with back to back games.

Posted by: DC_MAN88 | February 23, 2009 10:41 PM | Report abuse

And Trades... Who were Cleveland giving us for AJ. Was it Value? I think not. Would we have given up Value? Yes. Another chip in EG's bag for not making the trade.

If you ain't fleecing the other Teams, you don't do Trades.

LarryInClintonMD.

Posted by: LarryInClintonMD | February 23, 2009 10:43 PM | Report abuse

LarryInClintonMD

I am a big terp fan but after watching the following clip

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZGHaLUgrzi4

I wouldn't mind picking Tyler over Thabeet and Griffin. Both of them got girly fouled and came up lame.

Posted by: bulletsfan78 | February 23, 2009 10:47 PM | Report abuse

LarryInCLintonMD, you can't be serious about Hansborough? Granted, he is a hard worker, gritty and a smart player, but he isn't going to be an impact player in the League. There's simply no arguing that. Successful NBA players have at least one freakish skill, and Hansborough is no freak. That being said, I am not sure any of the "top 3" guys are going to be any good.

Posted by: ZardsFan1 | February 23, 2009 11:09 PM | Report abuse

ZardsFan1, Tyler is a 'what you see is what you get' kinda of guy. When I saw Alonzo Mourning at Georgetown, I said thats a tough guy, but I doubted that he would make it in the NBA.

Of course I was wrong, because Alonzo was also a 'what you see is what get' kinda of guy. The same way he played in college was the same way he played in the NBA.

A no nonsence tough as nails game and Tyler is cut from the very same mold.

BulletsFan78, you obviously see what I am talking about. What some don't realize is that in the NBA, big real mean tough guys are golden, and they don't come around often. The last one the Wizs/Bullets had was Wes Unseld.

LarryInClintonMD.

Posted by: LarryInClintonMD | February 24, 2009 12:29 AM | Report abuse

LarryInClintonMD

people will tell you look at Griffin numbers but if you look at what your guy has done at a program that has a tom of scorers it's impressive. Never seen this clip before....

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=htwkRYa0gOk&feature=related

Posted by: bulletsfan78 | February 24, 2009 12:41 AM | Report abuse

Hey Larry

Well, that WAS quite a Hansbrough dunk but you have to admit there must be a good reason why 7'7" Kenny George is playing for UNC Asheville and not UNC Chapel Hill...

I do think people are underestimating Tyler for the same reason they underrate Stephen Curry... emphasizing "NBA-style" physical tools over mental ability and strenghth of character.

That said, Hansbrough and Curry are both players for who a high draft choice can be packaged with and expiring contract and traded down, and Hansbrough COULD slip all the way to the early second round, where I would think the Wizards should take him in a heartbeat.

Posted by: khrabb | February 24, 2009 6:36 AM | Report abuse

I hope AJ and CB are watching the Celtic games. This is what two all stars can do if they play basketball the way it's supposed to be played. Please don't tell me Rondo is an all star....he is a true point guard but for some reason ETaps has to play MJ who is not over JC

http://www.nba.com/games/20090223/BOSDEN/boxscore.html

Posted by: bulletsfan78 | February 24, 2009 7:26 AM | Report abuse

SteveMG, microfracture surgery actually involves drilling holes in the bone to allow blood/marrow to leak into the area where cartilage has worn out. It hardens (not as much as real cartilage) and forms 'padding'. It is in no way the same as actual cartilage and it's a temporary fix.

It's also easy to screw up the rehab...I did it. If you come back too soon before it hardens completely, you run the risk of screwing up the 'mixture' before it can properly harden. That's why you see guys like Amare trying to come back early and then backing off when it doesn't work. There's no way to speed up the process. It takes a couple years before its completely ready to pound and even then, it's just a matter of time before it wears out again.
Whatever alignment issue with the knee/leg that caused the cartilage to wear out in a particular area will (over time) undoubtedly cause the same wear on the microfracture fix. There is another procedure that surgeons are doing that involves extracting cartilage cells, growing them in a lab, and injecting the mixture back into the worn out areas 'lesions' of your cartilage. The mixture is held in place in a sac sutured over the 'lesion' made of tissue removed from your shin. This actually has a better chance of working but the rehab takes 2 years at least. I had that one and it's a tough rehab but it's more effective than microfracture. No one wants to give up 2 years, though.

I think Gil is icing as a preventative issue but we're looking at a player that probably has about 5 good years left before he turns into Mitch Richmond II. Fortunately, that's about the length of his contract, right?

Posted by: original_mark | February 24, 2009 7:33 AM | Report abuse

khrabb, I think Hansbrough is between 6'7" and 6'8". That's probably the real reason scouts aren't as high on him. I doubt we'd take him but you never know.

cj658, no offense meant but your last name must be Thabeet. You have got to be a relative for you to be so high on the guy. He's had some good games but what makes you think he's that much of an upgrade over Haywood or even Roy Hibbert? Even in college where he towers over everybody, Thabeet's only offense comes on dunks. He's not going to be able to get that close that easily in the pros.
Hibbert is just as big and strong and is a more fundamentally sound player. Hasheem is a better shotblocker and rebounder in college but I think he'll find the same challenges as Roy is finding. Thabeet may (MAY) wind up being decent but right now, he's not the guy this team needs. We need interior scoring and he provides little. I hope he proves me wrong.

Posted by: original_mark | February 24, 2009 7:44 AM | Report abuse

Yea Khrabb, you're right about Kenny George. But this emphasizes how like Mourning, Hansborough plays. I can still see reruns in my head of how Mourning would put the ball up over you through you and muscle you through the basket to score if you were in the way. Tyler plays the same way no matter who it is, just like Mourning.

And 78, you know I have said people need to be careful about stats to all those who use stats as a common denominator, but his numbers are extremely impressive considering those are Tarheel numbers in the ACC conference as you know.

When Duncan played 4-yrs at Wake Forest, he was not a jump out at you glamour boy pick either, bit San Antonio new better. To take him and pair him with Robinson was like slapping your competition with gloves. Got Game Anyone. If Robinson's back had not failed him they might have easily had two more champioships.

I can only salivate with the prospect of the right coaching pairing Tyler at PF with BH at C.

Dosen't sound like much I know, but as they say in Horse Shoes, thats a ringer and you discovered it after you looked closely as the cloud of dust blew away, cause it was ugly pitching, if ya' kno' what' I mean.

LarryInClintonMD.

Posted by: LarryInClintonMD | February 24, 2009 8:02 AM | Report abuse

If Hansbrough slips to the second Ernie would snatch him in a heartbeat. That's one reason I've advocated trading down if we lucked into the #1 pick. OKC's got two extra picks, and there's going to be some value later in the first round.

Tyler has the same problem almost all 3 or 4 yr college players have now. Scouts have looked at them so much that they see warts on clear skin. That goes back to the discussion of coaching, a team needs to decide what they are looking for and pick to a player's strengths and see if his weaknesses can be coached away.

Hansbrough and Curry are two guys I really like, but neither is a top 5 pick type of talent.

Hansbrough strikes me as a Shane Battier type of guy in the pros. I don't see him being a team changer, but he will stick because of work ethic,toughness, and he knows how to play the game.

Trading Etan or James, Grunfeld will be able to get value in return if he's willing to take on some one that has 2-4 yrs left on their deal. There are a lot of teams that are trying to get in on that 2010 talent derby. Going to be a lot of teams that come away empty too.

Teams are going to waste worth while assets trying to get far enough under the cap to be bidders that summer. Thomas and James combined could allow the Wizards to take on about 14m in Salary if Grunfeld is willing to go over the LT to take it on an additional Salary in the next couple of years.

Late in the first round there will be teams giving away picks because they're shying away from a three year contract commitment. Here's one I bet Ernie can pull off. Pecherov and a future second rounder for a first round draft pick in the last third of the first round.

Reason why, Pecherov can be non tendered summer of 2010, a rookie first rounder can't.

Or. Who knows Ernie could be putting himself in position to bid.

Posted by: flohrtv | February 24, 2009 8:13 AM | Report abuse

LOL to this board. I think my comments yesterday got a “tad bit” blown out of proportion.

My overall point about the economy was this: Teams do not let the economic forecast dictate whether or not they make stupid moves. Any team trading for Ny and getting Etan’s contract along with him is plain STUPID. No Gm would do that REGARDLESS of the economy. GM’s do not let the economy dictate their moves. Sports in general are doing just fine. The good teams still sell out, the bad teams do not. It’s a fairly simple equation. It will ALWAYS be that way, regardless of what’s going on with Wall Street. Period. Do you people honestly think teams will be “apprehensive” with next year’s free agency class? It will be a record breaking off-season next year, spending wise, believe it. We all know that.

And I was dead serious about Thabeet. To suggest that he is on the same level as Hibbert is hilarious. Just be sure to tune in to the NCAA tourney.

And what do you guys think about that stud PG from MD? Greevis Vasquez I think his name is? Man, that guy is the real deal. If the Wiz cannot get Thabeet, I say take Vasquez. I 6’6 PG with all the tools. Also, do not sleep on David Neal, another big man with great touch and a physical presence. He’s another guy I’d take if Thabeet is already taken.

Posted by: cj658 | February 24, 2009 8:48 AM | Report abuse

Please do us all a favor and stop attributing teams unwillingness to take on contracts due to economy. The thought and concept is pure stupidity, at its highest level.

You talk a good game , but you’re really just as clueless as any average Joe. Pitiful. Again, pure idiotic foolishness.
Posted by: cj658 | February 23, 2009 5:18 PM

Then you turn around and say everything was taken a "tad bit" out of proportion? "LOL" to you.

"GM’s do not let the economy dictate their moves. "

Nobody said anything about dictate. But significantly influence...that is absolutely true. Read up. There's plenty of pure stupidity at its highest level going on.
http://www.nba.com/2009/news/features/02/09/aldridge/index.html

Posted by: crs-one | February 24, 2009 9:15 AM | Report abuse

Mark, How many games have you watched Thabeet? And how many games did you watch Hibbert in college?

Hibbert was a prime example of coaching to a player's strengths. When the kid got to GT he could barely run. He had the slowest feet I've ever seen on a big. He still has slow feet, though much improved, and no explosion and vertical leap.

All that said, if he was there when the Wiz picked, I think he would have been picked over McGee at that point. He's got a big body and soft hands and good court vision.

About the only thing he has in common with Thabeet is a big 7'2" frame. They say Thabeet's 7'3".

Thabeet is even less experienced then Hibbert, this is only his 4th yr of organized basketball. Thabeet has quick feet and can really get up for a big guy. He's plenty strong he's just got to learn how to not let shorter guys out leverage him.

The U Conn staff has done a great job coaching him to this point, he's still far from a finished product, so he'll need more. Starting him out behind Haywood would be great for his first year. He couldn't ask for a better situation in that regard.

But I never heard college coaches compare Hibbert to Russell. Hibbert and Thabeet are just not comparable players at all.

Posted by: flohrtv | February 24, 2009 9:24 AM | Report abuse

yawn.

Posted by: ewoldtk | February 24, 2009 9:29 AM | Report abuse

CRS, good article. You fail to mention that the article is all pure speculation, with no factual representation. I do not care who David Aldridge’s “nameless league sources” are.

Did it ever occur to you that 2010 will be the biggest/best free agent market in NBA history?
Did it ever occur to you that GM’s play chess with one another, and alwaystry to put their respective teams in the best position for future moves?
Did it ever occur to you that teams may be attempting to “dump” salary in order to position themselves for 2010?
Do you know how much money will be spent on FA’s next year, do you have any idea?
Last but not least, did you even read the article? Did you realize that NONE of the suggested trades in the article even took place, LOL to you my friend. It was ALL rumors and speculation.

Did you watch the Suns game on Sunday? Did you hear the Kerr interview? He said he was NEVER serious about trading Amare, and a lot of it was all “made up” through the media and rumors. Get with the program, pal. Hope I didn’t ruffle your feathers.

Posted by: cj658 | February 24, 2009 9:37 AM | Report abuse

cj658, You should look at situations like Manny Ramirez. He's being offered 1 year for 25 mill. In better times, he'd have been given a multi-year deal based on the numbers he put up. Sports are feeling the effect. Everyone is.

Why is comparing Thabeet with Hibbert a stretch? They're both 7'2 or taller and are projects because of their height. Thabeet is a more fluid, better athlete but the strength of each is their height.

Do you agree that this Wiz team has been looking for an inside scoring presence for years so that we can play inside/out like a lot of the good teams? Do you think Thabeet can do that for us?

Posted by: original_mark | February 24, 2009 9:42 AM | Report abuse

GM, You're right in that they have completely dissimilar games. I've watched Thabeet a few times only but I saw Hibbert for a couple years (maybe 20+ games).

I guess my point (which I obviously failed to make) was that if these guys were 6'9, neither would be a first round pick. Their height IS their only asset. Neither is a beast on the boards and neither is a big scoring threat. I'm not sure that Thabeet has the skills to do anything major at a level where everyone is big and strong. cj658 seems to think that he's a lock to be a beast but we can probably name on one hand the number of guys in the last 25 years who were 7'2" or taller who were decent NBA players.

Kareem, Eaton, Mutombo, Smits, Muresan are the ones that immediately come to mind but I'm probably forgetting a few.

On the other hand, strong, overpowering, tall power forwards who are very good rebounders in college and also score usually make an impact in the NBA game. I'm not bashing Thabeet as much as saying that Griffin would be a better choice for us.

In the end, we're going to wind up with the 5th pick anyway probably with our luck. It probably won't even matter.

Posted by: original_mark | February 24, 2009 9:50 AM | Report abuse

cj658 and GM...

One more question? Do you guys both think that Thabeet has more upside than JM? Keep in mind that JM has the tallest standing reach in the league (BTH is second) and may still be growing. Also bear in mind that athletically, Thabeet is nowhere close to JM.

I'd rather go with the guy that has basketball skill and just needs to add weight over the guy that has the size but needs the skill. I think Thabeet is a little redundant at this point, If there were no JM, I'm all for Thabeet but I've seen enough from JM to recognize that he's a special talent.

Posted by: original_mark | February 24, 2009 9:56 AM | Report abuse

“cj658, You should look at situations like Manny Ramirez. He's being offered 1 year for 25 mill. In better times, he'd have been given a multi-year deal based on the numbers he put up. Sports are feeling the effect. Everyone is.”

Actually, I disagree. Teams do not want to sign a guy who is 37 years old to a 3+ year deal. Manny wants 3 years, 75 mil, at the minimum. What team wants to pay a 40 year old 25 mill? That si the reason, nothing to with the economy. Most MLB GM’s feel he has 2 more productive years left.

“Why is comparing Thabeet with Hibbert a stretch? They're both 7'2 or taller and are projects because of their height. Thabeet is a more fluid, better athlete but the strength of each is their height.”

You just answered your own question, Thabeet is the “more fluid, better athlete”. Athleticism is huge in this game, especially with big men. Imagine Dwight Howard without his athleticism. Wouldn’t be a pretty picture. His entire game revolves around him being a good, fluid athlete. And his production speaks for itself. Hibbert is terrible athlete, at Gtown prep, he was just a man amongst boys. Gtown molded him into a decent college center. And Hibbert didn’t win back to back NCAA defensive POY awards either. And I don’t recall opposing coaches saying the following about Roy Hibbert:

Jim Boeheim- "I've said it before and I still believe he's the best we've had in this league," Boeheim said. "We're an inside team and takes that away from you."

Jim Calhoun- "We're not the best offensive team in the league but we're a pretty good defensive team with Hasheem in the middle," Calhoun said. "He affected 20 penetrations in the lane. Don't get caught up in stats with him, even as good as they are, because he is one of the most amazing forces in basketball in America."

Bobby Gonzalez- "Thabeet, to me, might be the best player in the country," Seton Hall coach Bobby Gonzalez said. "I don't know who has a better player than him, who is a more dominant guy than him in the country. He, to me, is the No. 1 player in America. In my opinion from what I have seen, you know I am not trying to push him out the door, have him go pro, but if I was an NBA franchise I would take him No. 1 in the draft."

“Do you agree that this Wiz team has been looking for an inside scoring presence for years so that we can play inside/out like a lot of the good teams? Do you think Thabeet can do that for us?”

No I do not agree. The Wiz need an inside DEFENSIVE presence. That is what this team has been lacking the past 5 years, and that is the reason this team cannot get over the hump, DEFENSE. This team has no trouble scoring when healthy, scoring was the reason the Wizards were even able to make the playoffs. Defense is the reason they have not been able to advance in the playoffs.

Posted by: cj658 | February 24, 2009 10:00 AM | Report abuse

“In the end, we're going to wind up with the 5th pick anyway probably with our luck. It probably won't even matter.”

LOL, you’re right. That’s just part of the fun of being a Wizards fan. At least if we get the fifth pick, we can take Vasquez from UMD.

Posted by: cj658 | February 24, 2009 10:18 AM | Report abuse

CRS, good article. You fail to mention that the article is all pure speculation, with no factual representation. I do not care who David Aldridge’s “nameless league sources” are.
Posted by: cj658 | February 24, 2009 9:37 AM

All things being equal, I'll take the "speculation" of an expert over your own speculation any day.
-----------------
"No question the economy is driving more basketball decisions," another team executive e-mailed
-----------------
That's pretty much saying the exact opposite of what you've been saying about the economy. Now I understand that you don't care who his sources are. But I think the majority of people would find his sources more credible than your own random speculation. Just because you don't care doesn't mean theyre discredited.

Did it ever occur to you that the Tyson Chandler deal DID occur? I'm guessing you're saying it doesn't count because he failed the physical. There's no way to "factually" prove someone's motivations. Although

"the Hornets have made it clear, one of the execs said, that the goal in seeing what's available for Chandler is saving money."

GMs play chess. the Hornets GM probably made it clear to other GMs. I apologize on his behalf if he didn't make it clear to an important internet blogger like you.

The Hornets, who are a playoff contender NOW, were willing to dump off a key part of their team. Are you going to ask me if it occured to me that they don't want to compete now, they want to compete in 2010?

OKC is looking to build and Chandler would have been a key part. Granted, he may not play much of the rest of the season because of his ankle...but OKC needs a part for next season, not this season. So why didn't they waive the physical? because they want to be in the Lebron sweepstakes? is that your answer to everything?

Did it ever occur to you that the deals suggested in the article didn't go through for the same reason that people were trying to deal them? That people who were unloading salaries had trouble finding someone to take on the salaries?

http://www.nba.com/2009/news/features/02/19/aldridge.roundup/index.html

Did it ever occur to you that the majority of trades that *did* occur in this boring trade deadline were cost-cutting moves? What about Radmonavic for morrison? Are the Lakers going to be in the Lebron sweepstakes?

And did it ever occur to you that sometimes steve kerr, like all humans, lies? If Stoudemire talks were all media hyperbole, why did he say so after the deadline instead of before? It's called posturing. Spinning. Now that he wasn't able to get anything, he says it was his plan all along; this, in order to keep the fans behind Amare, to keep Amare from becoming disinterested, and to keep the rest of the team together for a playoff push.

"Get with the program." Earth-shattering logic there.

Posted by: crs-one | February 24, 2009 10:32 AM | Report abuse

"This team is playing far worse than at any point under EJ"


Uh, someone has forgotten the 1-11 start of the season was under EJ.

And no, EJ was not fired under the premise that there is enough talent in this team to win, he was fired under the premise that this team can win more than 10% of the games!

I agree Tapscott didn't do much better, that's why we need a good coach next season!

Posted by: sagaliba | February 24, 2009 10:33 AM | Report abuse

flohrtv: "If Hansbrough slips to the second Ernie would snatch him in a heartbeat. That's one reason I've advocated trading down if we lucked into the #1 pick. OKC's got two extra picks, and there's going to be some value later in the first round."

I guess I agree with the first statement but not the conclusion. Hansbrough would be a very strong late first or early second round choice. Nick Collison, that's who I think of when I watch him. But even harder-working.

But the NBA doesn't work like the NFL. Trading down rarely works, unless you get a prime veteran in the package. The NBA rosters are just too small.

You don't want to wind up drafting year after year outside the lottery. Sooner or later it'll catch up.

Posted by: Samson151 | February 24, 2009 10:41 AM | Report abuse

LOL, you’re right. That’s just part of the fun of being a Wizards fan. At least if we get the fifth pick, we can take Vasquez from UMD.


Posted by: cj658 | February 24, 2009 10:18 AM

The last thing this team needs is another player who shots first and never passes the ball and this is coming form a huge Terp fan.

Posted by: bulletsfan78 | February 24, 2009 10:47 AM | Report abuse

"Uh, someone has forgotten the 1-11 start of the season was under EJ. And no, EJ was not fired under the premise that there is enough talent in this team to win, he was fired under the premise that this team can win more than 10% of the games! I agree Tapscott didn't do much better, that's why we need a good coach next season!"

I was under the impression that EJ was fired (ostensibly) not just because of the record, but because the team was playing so poorly. The word Grunfeld used was 'unacceptable'. That was after that awful Knicks game, I think.

At the time, people thought the team could get no worse.

Ernie also stated, way back when, that the Wiz even without Arenas and Haywood were a .500 club.

We'll never know what Ed Jordan could have done with this squad because he didn't get the chance. Based on the recent interview, he doesn't think he could have done much.

Time to move on. Who will the next coach be? That's the question on the table.

Posted by: Samson151 | February 24, 2009 11:12 AM | Report abuse

"You don't want to wind up drafting year after year outside the lottery. Sooner or later it'll catch up."

For the Wizards it already has, Samson151. The effect of the lack of blue chip youngsters on the roster over the last 5 years has really come to light this season as they struggle through the growing pains of McGee, Young, et al. The fact that their most promising developmental player over that time was a guy taken 49th overall is not a good sign.

That being said, your point about trading down is right on. I'd go farther, however, and say that if they get a top 5 pick and there's no one on the board they really love, they may need to find a way to trade out of the draft altogether. Obviously that's easier said than done. Given the lack of immediate game-changers in the draft and the reluctance of some teams to spend money, teams might not be so eager to pay out guaranteed first round salary for guys who may not contribute right away or ever become stars. But that's where having expiring contracts come in handy. The Wiz could be able to package one of their expiring deals with the pick for a vet on a deal that runs past 2010 from a team looking to get into Lebron/Wade sweepstakes. They've got options.

Posted by: kalo_rama | February 24, 2009 11:24 AM | Report abuse

"You don't want to wind up drafting year after year outside the lottery. Sooner or later it'll catch up."

Which seems to me like a flaw in the system. Not sure it's correctable, but an inherent unfairness. The more successful you are over a longer period, the less likely you are to avoid a bad, bad slump.

Am I reading that correctly?

Posted by: Samson151 | February 24, 2009 11:46 AM | Report abuse

Saying they're comparable because they're both 7'2" is a stretch. Mark, Of the guys you listed as examples, only Jabber is a better athlete then Thabeet.

Thabeet doesn't have much offensive game at this point, so he's more comparable to Eaton and Motombo right now. But he's easily has better physical ability then either of those two. He's much quicker then either Eaton or Motombo. and a far better leaper.

Having an Eaton or a Motombo type player to add to this team gives it far more of what it needs then another forward to add to the mix. I think Thabeet's ceiling is really higher then either of those players in the long run. But who knows...

Posted by: flohrtv | February 24, 2009 11:47 AM | Report abuse

I don't really see it as a flaw in the system so much as a reflection of the system's inherently cyclical nature. Teams that are good enough to avoid the lottery for years on end are also generally good enough that they don't really need the lottery. (The Spurs haven't had a lottery pick in more than a decade, but they seem to have weathered it okay.) The lottery is, theoretically, supposed to help maintain competitiveness and parity by allowing bad teams to get the best shot at the kind of talent that will help them turn things around and lift them up from the cellar (the theory being the the greater the number of competitive teams, the better it is for the league as a whole).

If a team is good enough to say out of the lottery for a long time, odds are that they'll fall form grace eventually. But staying out of the lottery for an extended time isn't just a function of talent, it's also a result of good management. So when the crash does come, a lottery pick and some smart FA moves should help them get back in the race pretty quickly. The fly in the ointment comes from teams that end up in the lottery year after year and never actually get any better. But that's not a problem with the system, that's a flaw in the management of those teams.

Posted by: kalo_rama | February 24, 2009 12:12 PM | Report abuse

I would have liked the wizards keep mason and hopefully build chemistry with him on the team rather than have juan dixon who has been a disaapointment all season, so gil and BHaywood will be back. the wizards must trade their pick and get a solid reliable small foward or pf to play some defense and make some shots.. thats what the wizards need, a "reliable veteran" (roger mason) was one of them!! and get blatche playing to his highest potential as well as young and mcguire...

Posted by: hawksbest08 | February 24, 2009 1:35 PM | Report abuse

JM is a 4-5 to me. He could easily get 10-15 min. a game at the 4. And if teams wanted to go small to get Thabeet off the floor, that would be playing into McGee's hands.

So it would give a defensive minded coach moves to make up front. Our frontline would be deep and multi-talented and would give a defensive minded coach options.

One of the reasons Mason wasn't brought back was this roster is already guard heavy. Only problem is quantity doesn't make quality.

Posted by: flohrtv | February 24, 2009 2:15 PM | Report abuse

Samson151,

Don't think Ernie ever publically said that Wiz without Arenas and Haywood were a .500 club. He did say 1-11 is unacceptable, along with the way Wiz lost to the 7-men Knicks as you pointed out.

Agree with the rest of your post!

Posted by: sagaliba | February 24, 2009 2:35 PM | Report abuse

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